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Year : 2013  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 78-81

Biopsychosocial problems experienced by menopausal women

Department of OBG Nursing, Father Muller College of Nursing, Kankanady, Mangalore, Karnataka, India

Date of Web Publication16-Sep-2013

Correspondence Address:
Savitha P Cutinho
Department of OBG Nursing, Father Muller College of Nursing, Kankanady, Mangalore - 575 002, Karnataka
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Source of Support: Director and Principal of the College of Nursing, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0975-9727.118229

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Objectives: The aim of this study is to assess the selected biopsychosocial problems of menopausal women; to explore the relationship between the biological, psychological, and social problems associated with menopause; and to find an association between the biopsychosocial problem and the selected baseline variables. Materials and Methods: A descriptive study conducted among 50 postmenopausal women in Father Muller Medical College Hospital, from November 2011 to January 2012. The purposive sampling technique was used to select 50 postmenopausal women. Data was collected using a rating scale on biopsychosocial problems. Results: The biopsychosocial problems experienced by the women at moderate levels: Most of the postmenopausal women experienced biological problems. The problems were ranked based on the percentage. Conclusion: The finding of the study implicates that biological problems are felt the most in comparison with the psychological and social problems.

Keywords: Biopsychosocial problems, menopause, postmenopausal women, reproductive age

How to cite this article:
Cutinho SP, D'Souza F, D'Souza SP, D'Costa ID, Sebastian S, Jose A. Biopsychosocial problems experienced by menopausal women. Muller J Med Sci Res 2013;4:78-81

How to cite this URL:
Cutinho SP, D'Souza F, D'Souza SP, D'Costa ID, Sebastian S, Jose A. Biopsychosocial problems experienced by menopausal women. Muller J Med Sci Res [serial online] 2013 [cited 2023 Jun 2];4:78-81. Available from: https://www.mjmsr.net/text.asp?2013/4/2/78/118229

  Introduction Top

Midlife is a period of transition for both men and women. It brings about changes in women and it has an implication on women's health. The experience of menopause is different for every woman. Menopause may be viewed as a transition of women from middle age to old age. In women this period is commonly referred as a, 'change of life,' because of the physical changes that occur in addition to the loss of child-bearing capacity. Menopause is a unique stage of the female reproductive life cycle, a transition from the reproductive to the non-reproductive stage. Around 25.1% of the Indian population belong to the middle-age group, out of which 12.89% belong to the menopausal group. [1]
"Menopause is an event in life, not a disease." It is a single event in a women's life her last menstrual period. Menarche heralds the onset of the reproductive function and menopause signals its end. [2] Menopause is an event with a variety of symptoms like irritability, lethargy, depression, flushes, night sweats, headaches, forgetfulness, weight gain, insomnia, joint and muscle pain, palpitations, crying spells, constipation, dysuria, and decreased libido. [3]

The number of women approaching menopause is increasing nowadays and a majority of the women may spend a greater part of their life in postmenopausal years. About 75% of the women at menopause undergo various changes physically and psychologically, 25% need medical advice, and only 5 - 10% of the women need reassurance. [4]

  Materials and Methods Top

A descriptive study was conducted in the month of March 2012, in a selected medical college hospital, with the purpose of identifying the biological, psychological, and social problems of postmenopausal women. A sample of 50 postmenopausal women working in different departments of the hospital were selected using the purposive sampling technique, and data has been collected on the biopsychosocial problems of the post menopause period using a structured rating scale.

Data Collection Instrument

The research tool had a demographic proforma to collect the background data of the subjects. It consisted of the following items: Age in years, education, religion, type of family, marital status, age at menarche, menstrual cycle, age at menopause, number of children, and age at delivery. The subjects were request to place tick marks against the appropriate boxes.

A rating scale to assess the menopausal problems was developed by the investigator. The constructed tool validated by the experts in the subject, checked the reliability and pretested. The tool had three areas - biological, psychological, and social - with a total of 46 items.


A written consent was obtained from the higher authority of the hospital and the postmenopausal women. The purpose of the study was explained to the subjects. A structured rating scale was given to the study subjects working in the various departments of the hospital. Each subject had taken 15-20 minutes to complete the rating scale and returned it to the investigator on completion. The participants were cooperative. The collected data was analyzed using the SPSS package.

  Results Top

The results of the study showed that out of 50 postmenopausal women, a maximum percentage of the women had biological problems (39.14%) in comparison with the psychological (36.93%) and social problems (29.33%) [Table 1] and [Figure 1].
Table 1: Biopsychosocial problems of menopausal women (N=50)

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Figure 1: Bar diagram showing the biopsychosocial problems of postmenopausal women

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Biological Problems

The common biological problems experienced by the majority of the postmenopausal women are, "I feel hot all over the body", "I feel increased frequency of urination", "I feel fatigued," and "I am conscious about my weight gain".

Psychological Problems

The majority of the women experienced "lack of interest in the daily activities", "I do not forget things easily," and "I seek help from others in day-to-day activities". Out of 50, around 15 women felt that "they get angry easily," and few women, "rarely listen to music or read books during the leisure time" and have a severe problem "in getting sleep".

Social Problems

Most of the women had no social problems. Very few women expressed, "I want to be alone" and most of the women "enjoyed the company of others".

The biopsychosocial problems were further categorized as mild, moderate, and severe [Table 2].
Table 2: Biopsychosocial problems of menopausal women based on the severity (N=50)

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The biological and psychological problems experienced by the women at moderate level and social problems at a mild level. The least percentage of women experienced biological problems at a severe level and none of the women had psychological or social problems at a severe level [Figure 2].
Figure 2: Diagram showing biopsychosocial problems of the postmenopausal women based on the severity

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There is a correlation between the biological and physical problems experienced by menopausal women. There is no correlation between the biological and social or psychological and social problems experienced by the women [Table 3].
Table 3: Relationship between biological, psychological, and social problems of menopausal women (N=50)

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The null hypothesis is accepted and the research hypothesis is rejected.

There is no significant relationship between the biological, psychological or social problems. There is a positive relationship between the biological and psychological problems.

There was no association with the biopsychosocial problems and the selected variables, thus a null hypothesis was accepted and research hypothesis rejected [Table 4].
Table 4: Association between biopsychosocial problems and selected baseline variables (N=50)

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  Discussion Top

Menopause is synonymous with the phrase 'the change of life' for any woman in the age group of 45 to 55 years, and it is a broad concept. The climacteric is the time when many physiological and psychological changes occur. The physician or the nurse practitioner generally provides the initial education and course of treatment. The nurse plays an important role in assessing the problems experienced by menopausal women, providing information and acting as a liaison between the women and health care provider.

The maximum participants of the study were in the age group of 40 to 50 years and most of them attained menarche between 13 and 15 years and menopause at the age of 45years and above. Most of the participants were Hindus belonging to a nuclear family.

In the present study, the biological problems experienced by women were maximum and at a severe level, the psychological problems were at a moderate level, and the social problems were minimum, at a mild level. Overall the biopsychosocial problems were at a moderate level and a very low percentage of women experienced them at a severe level.

Most of the women had increased frequency of urination, felt fatigue, and felt hot all over the body. There was a correlation between the biological and psychological problems, but no correlation between the psychological and social problems. The researcher came to the conclusion that there was no association between the biopsychosocial problems and selected demographic variables.

  Conclusion Top

Emerging research has redefined the understanding of the experience of women during the climacteric; menopausal women experience a lot of biopsychosocial problems due to reduction of the ovarian function. The nurse, as one of the health team members, can help menopausal women by teaching them how to cope with the menopausal transition.

The findings of the study clearly highlight the problems experienced by menopausal women. The present study can help a health care professional thus,

  • To gain insight into the problems faced during the menopausal transition
  • To gain adequate knowledge regarding menopause and the measures to get along with the menopausal problems, including the treatment modalities
  • To develop the ability to counsel menopausal women to cope with menopausal problems
  • The nurse educator can teach nursing students to identify the problems of menopausal women
  • The nurse educator can also teach the students the coping strategies to solve menopausal problems
  • The nurse administrator must organize programs like Women's Health and Midlife.
  • The nurse administrator can train the nursing students and staff on how to help menopausal women cope with their problems.

  References Top

1.Hunter MS. Psychological and somatic experience of menopause: A prospective study. Psychosom Med 1990;52:357-67.   Back to cited text no. 1
2.Hunter M, Battersby R, Whitehead M. Relationships between psychological symptoms, somatic complaints and menopausal status. Maturitas 2008;61:95-106.  Back to cited text no. 2
3.Pan HA, Wu MH, Hsu CC, Yao BL, Huang KE. The perception of menopause among women in Taiwan. Maturitas 2002;41:269-74.  Back to cited text no. 3
4.Hardy R, Kuh D. Change in psychological and vasomotor symptom reporting during the menopause. Soc Sci Med 2002; 55:1975-88.  Back to cited text no. 4


  [Figure 1], [Figure 2]

  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4]


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